The Open Door Night of the Croatian Air Force and Air Defence was organised for…
The ceremony marking the 25th Annivesary of the Croatian Air Force and Air Defence, held in the Barracks “Pukovnik Marko Živković” at Pleso on 9 December 2016 was attended by the President of the Republic Kolinda Grabar Kitarović, the Envoy of the Prime Minister and of the Deputy Prime Minister and Defence Minister of the Republic of Croatia, State Secretary for Defence Zdravko Jakop, the Chief of the General Staff of the Croatian Armed Forces General Mirko Šundov, the representatives of the units of of the Ministry of Defence and of the Croatian Armed forces, the representatives of the associations from the Homeland War, of the diplomatic and military diplomatic corps, the former commanders and members an the families of the fallen members of the Croatian Air Force and Air Defence.
“The 25th anniversary reminds us of the early days of the service and of its operation in the Homeland War but also reflects the tradition of the air force and the aeronautic science potentials in Croatia“, said the President, who congratulated the members of the Croatian Air Force and Air Defence on the anniversary and recalled its important role during the Homeland War, paying the tribute to its fallen members.
The Croatian Air Force is the guard of the national sovereignty and a participant in international operations, providing support to Croatian citizens as well as to foreign countries hit by natural disasters and crises“.
Recalling the Homeland War, State Secretary for Defence Zdravko Jakop gave credit to the members of the Croatian Air Force for successfully defending Croatia despite very limited assets, armed with firm resolution. Today, the Croatian Air Force and Air Defence as a technologically sophisticated service, requires constant investment into modernisation and maintenance alike The investment into defence and security is a long-term investment and a guarantee of the economic and other aspects of security. The Ministry of Defence is determined to set the framework for enhanced security capabilities, as testified by the increased defence budget following an extended lean period. “We are convinced that keeping the combat air force component constitutes a national interest and believe to achieve a national consensus regarding the decision defining its future in the Croatian Air Force“ said State Secretary Jakop.
Reminding of the quality education and training model for pilots, air technicians and aircraft marshalling officers administered in Croatia and respected internationally, the Chief of the General Staff of the Croatian Armed Forces, General Mirko Šundov emphasised that investing into the personnel and its education and training is necessary to keep the air force tradition. “The competence of the members of the Croatian Air Force and Air Defence are demonstrated in the international co-operation activities and operation within NATO architecture. What is most important is the 24-hour observation of the national airspace, instilling confidence in the Croatian citizens.
“There are but few militaries and few air forces which seeing so much history over a 25- year span”, said the Commander of the Croatian Air Force and Air Defence, Brigadier General Miroslav Kovač, and underlined the new post-war challenges for the Croatian Air Force and Air Defence “which went through a series of reorganisations resulting in a modern service, fully capable of exercising the tasks and missions defined in the Constitution and laws.
The ceremony was concluded with the presentation of decorations, promotions and awards to the meriting members of the Croatian Air Force and Air Defence, and with the visit of the tactical display of the aircraft operated at the apron of the 93rd Air Base.